Feed aggregator

  • warning: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/Los_Angeles' for 'PST/-8.0/no DST' instead in /nfs/cristina/home1/b/brian/public_html/drupal-6.28/modules/aggregator/aggregator.pages.inc on line 259.
  • warning: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/Los_Angeles' for 'PST/-8.0/no DST' instead in /nfs/cristina/home1/b/brian/public_html/drupal-6.28/modules/aggregator/aggregator.pages.inc on line 259.
  • warning: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/Los_Angeles' for 'PST/-8.0/no DST' instead in /nfs/cristina/home1/b/brian/public_html/drupal-6.28/modules/aggregator/aggregator.pages.inc on line 259.
  • warning: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/Los_Angeles' for 'PST/-8.0/no DST' instead in /nfs/cristina/home1/b/brian/public_html/drupal-6.28/modules/aggregator/aggregator.pages.inc on line 259.
  • warning: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/Los_Angeles' for 'PST/-8.0/no DST' instead in /nfs/cristina/home1/b/brian/public_html/drupal-6.28/modules/aggregator/aggregator.pages.inc on line 259.
  • warning: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/Los_Angeles' for 'PST/-8.0/no DST' instead in /nfs/cristina/home1/b/brian/public_html/drupal-6.28/modules/aggregator/aggregator.pages.inc on line 259.
  • warning: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/Los_Angeles' for 'PST/-8.0/no DST' instead in /nfs/cristina/home1/b/brian/public_html/drupal-6.28/modules/aggregator/aggregator.pages.inc on line 259.
  • warning: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/Los_Angeles' for 'PST/-8.0/no DST' instead in /nfs/cristina/home1/b/brian/public_html/drupal-6.28/modules/aggregator/aggregator.pages.inc on line 259.
  • warning: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/Los_Angeles' for 'PST/-8.0/no DST' instead in /nfs/cristina/home1/b/brian/public_html/drupal-6.28/modules/aggregator/aggregator.pages.inc on line 259.
  • warning: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/Los_Angeles' for 'PST/-8.0/no DST' instead in /nfs/cristina/home1/b/brian/public_html/drupal-6.28/modules/aggregator/aggregator.pages.inc on line 259.
  • warning: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/Los_Angeles' for 'PST/-8.0/no DST' instead in /nfs/cristina/home1/b/brian/public_html/drupal-6.28/modules/aggregator/aggregator.pages.inc on line 259.
  • warning: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/Los_Angeles' for 'PST/-8.0/no DST' instead in /nfs/cristina/home1/b/brian/public_html/drupal-6.28/modules/aggregator/aggregator.pages.inc on line 259.
  • warning: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/Los_Angeles' for 'PST/-8.0/no DST' instead in /nfs/cristina/home1/b/brian/public_html/drupal-6.28/modules/aggregator/aggregator.pages.inc on line 259.
  • warning: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/Los_Angeles' for 'PST/-8.0/no DST' instead in /nfs/cristina/home1/b/brian/public_html/drupal-6.28/modules/aggregator/aggregator.pages.inc on line 259.
  • warning: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/Los_Angeles' for 'PST/-8.0/no DST' instead in /nfs/cristina/home1/b/brian/public_html/drupal-6.28/modules/aggregator/aggregator.pages.inc on line 259.
  • warning: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/Los_Angeles' for 'PST/-8.0/no DST' instead in /nfs/cristina/home1/b/brian/public_html/drupal-6.28/modules/aggregator/aggregator.pages.inc on line 259.
  • warning: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/Los_Angeles' for 'PST/-8.0/no DST' instead in /nfs/cristina/home1/b/brian/public_html/drupal-6.28/modules/aggregator/aggregator.pages.inc on line 259.
  • warning: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/Los_Angeles' for 'PST/-8.0/no DST' instead in /nfs/cristina/home1/b/brian/public_html/drupal-6.28/modules/aggregator/aggregator.pages.inc on line 259.
  • warning: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/Los_Angeles' for 'PST/-8.0/no DST' instead in /nfs/cristina/home1/b/brian/public_html/drupal-6.28/modules/aggregator/aggregator.pages.inc on line 259.
  • warning: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/Los_Angeles' for 'PST/-8.0/no DST' instead in /nfs/cristina/home1/b/brian/public_html/drupal-6.28/modules/aggregator/aggregator.pages.inc on line 259.
  • warning: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/Los_Angeles' for 'PST/-8.0/no DST' instead in /nfs/cristina/home1/b/brian/public_html/drupal-6.28/modules/aggregator/aggregator.pages.inc on line 259.
  • warning: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/Los_Angeles' for 'PST/-8.0/no DST' instead in /nfs/cristina/home1/b/brian/public_html/drupal-6.28/modules/aggregator/aggregator.pages.inc on line 259.
  • warning: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/Los_Angeles' for 'PST/-8.0/no DST' instead in /nfs/cristina/home1/b/brian/public_html/drupal-6.28/modules/aggregator/aggregator.pages.inc on line 259.
  • warning: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/Los_Angeles' for 'PST/-8.0/no DST' instead in /nfs/cristina/home1/b/brian/public_html/drupal-6.28/modules/aggregator/aggregator.pages.inc on line 259.
  • warning: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/Los_Angeles' for 'PST/-8.0/no DST' instead in /nfs/cristina/home1/b/brian/public_html/drupal-6.28/modules/aggregator/aggregator.pages.inc on line 259.
  • warning: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/Los_Angeles' for 'PST/-8.0/no DST' instead in /nfs/cristina/home1/b/brian/public_html/drupal-6.28/modules/aggregator/aggregator.pages.inc on line 259.
  • warning: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/Los_Angeles' for 'PST/-8.0/no DST' instead in /nfs/cristina/home1/b/brian/public_html/drupal-6.28/modules/aggregator/aggregator.pages.inc on line 259.
  • warning: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/Los_Angeles' for 'PST/-8.0/no DST' instead in /nfs/cristina/home1/b/brian/public_html/drupal-6.28/modules/aggregator/aggregator.pages.inc on line 259.
  • warning: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/Los_Angeles' for 'PST/-8.0/no DST' instead in /nfs/cristina/home1/b/brian/public_html/drupal-6.28/modules/aggregator/aggregator.pages.inc on line 259.
  • warning: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/Los_Angeles' for 'PST/-8.0/no DST' instead in /nfs/cristina/home1/b/brian/public_html/drupal-6.28/modules/aggregator/aggregator.pages.inc on line 259.
  • warning: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/Los_Angeles' for 'PST/-8.0/no DST' instead in /nfs/cristina/home1/b/brian/public_html/drupal-6.28/modules/aggregator/aggregator.pages.inc on line 259.
  • warning: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/Los_Angeles' for 'PST/-8.0/no DST' instead in /nfs/cristina/home1/b/brian/public_html/drupal-6.28/modules/aggregator/aggregator.pages.inc on line 259.
  • warning: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/Los_Angeles' for 'PST/-8.0/no DST' instead in /nfs/cristina/home1/b/brian/public_html/drupal-6.28/modules/aggregator/aggregator.pages.inc on line 259.
  • warning: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/Los_Angeles' for 'PST/-8.0/no DST' instead in /nfs/cristina/home1/b/brian/public_html/drupal-6.28/modules/aggregator/aggregator.pages.inc on line 259.
  • warning: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/Los_Angeles' for 'PST/-8.0/no DST' instead in /nfs/cristina/home1/b/brian/public_html/drupal-6.28/modules/aggregator/aggregator.pages.inc on line 259.
  • warning: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/Los_Angeles' for 'PST/-8.0/no DST' instead in /nfs/cristina/home1/b/brian/public_html/drupal-6.28/modules/aggregator/aggregator.pages.inc on line 259.
  • warning: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/Los_Angeles' for 'PST/-8.0/no DST' instead in /nfs/cristina/home1/b/brian/public_html/drupal-6.28/modules/aggregator/aggregator.pages.inc on line 259.
  • warning: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/Los_Angeles' for 'PST/-8.0/no DST' instead in /nfs/cristina/home1/b/brian/public_html/drupal-6.28/modules/aggregator/aggregator.pages.inc on line 259.
  • warning: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/Los_Angeles' for 'PST/-8.0/no DST' instead in /nfs/cristina/home1/b/brian/public_html/drupal-6.28/modules/aggregator/aggregator.pages.inc on line 259.
  • warning: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/Los_Angeles' for 'PST/-8.0/no DST' instead in /nfs/cristina/home1/b/brian/public_html/drupal-6.28/modules/aggregator/aggregator.pages.inc on line 259.

S&P 500 adds Tesla, sending stock price soaring

ArsTechnica - Tue, 11/17/2020 - 9:49am
S&P 500 adds Tesla, sending stock price soaring

Enlarge (credit: Aurich Lawson vs Disney)

Tesla will finally be added to the S&P 500 Index, the committee responsible for the index announced after markets closed on Monday. The change will take effect on December 21.

Tesla's stock price jumped 13 percent in after-hours trading on Monday. As I write this just before noon on Tuesday, Tesla's stock has given back some of those gains and is up about 7 percent from Monday's close.

People have trillions of dollars in index funds that track the S&P 500 index. This means that when a stock is added to the S&P 500, fund managers have to add it to their portfolios, pushing up the stock price.

Read 4 remaining paragraphs | Comments

“Staggering and Tragic”: COVID-19 cases spike in US children, top 1 million

ArsTechnica - Tue, 11/17/2020 - 9:14am
A woman in protective gear leans over a toddler in a bed.

Enlarge / Boston Medical Center Child Life Specialist Karlie Bittrich sees to a baby while in a pediatrics tent set up outside of Boston Medical Center in Boston on April 29, 2020. (credit: Getty | Boston Globe)

As COVID-19 cases skyrocket throughout the country, cases are also spiking in infants, children, and adolescents, and the group is now sharing more of the disease burden than ever recorded.

Cases in the young jumped 22 percent in the two weeks between October 29 and November 12, according to a new report from the American Academy of Pediatrics. The week ending on November 12 saw the largest one-week spike recorded in the pandemic, with 112,000 new cases.

There have now been more than 1 million cases in infants, children, and adolescents—collectively “children”—and the group is making up a larger proportion of cases than before. Children now make up 11.5 percent of total cases in the United States. At the end of July, children made up 8.8 percent of cases, up from 7.1 percent at the end of June and 5.2 percent at the beginning of June.

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After Trump tweets Defcon hacking video, voting security experts call BS

ArsTechnica - Tue, 11/17/2020 - 7:07am
After Trump tweets Defcon hacking video, voting security experts call BS

Enlarge (credit: Getty Images)

As President Trump continues to make unfounded claims of widespread election fraud, 59 of the world’s foremost experts on electronic voting are hitting back, saying that recent allegations of actual voting machine hacking “have been unsubstantiated or are technically incoherent.”

Monday’s letter came after almost two weeks of baseless and unfounded claims from Trump and some of his supporters that this month’s presidential election had been “rigged” in favor of President-elect Joe Biden. On Thursday, Trump started a new round of disinformation when he took to Twitter to say that polling machines made by Dominion Voting deleted 2.7 million Trump votes around the country.

Vulnerabilities aren’t exploits

Over the weekend, Trump tweeted a video from last year’s Defcon hacker convention. It showed attendees participating in an event called the voting machine hacking village. Organizers of the event held it to raise awareness about the importance of security in electronic voting. Some of the event organizers were beside themselves that Trump was using the video as innuendo that voting machine hacking played a role in the results of this month’s election, or in any election ever, for that matter.

Read 7 remaining paragraphs | Comments

After 12,523 replacements, Feds investigate Tesla Media Control Unit failures

ArsTechnica - Tue, 11/17/2020 - 6:12am
The Telsa logo superimposed on top of a white brick wall

Enlarge (credit: Getty Images/Jonathan Gitlin)

Is one of Tesla's infotainment systems defective by design? That's a question the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration hopes to answer. It has started an engineering analysis after hundreds of customer complaints of bricked systems resulted in a preliminary investigation in June.

NHTSA thinks it knows what the problem is: an 8GB eMMC NAND flash memory chip with a finite number of write cycles, fitted to its Media Control Unit. The MCU regularly writes logs to this chip and, within three or four years, reaches the lifetime number of cycles. At this point the touchscreen dies, taking with it functions like the car's backup camera, the ability to defog the windows, and also the audible alerts and chimes for the driver aids and turn signals.

After the regulator's Office of Defects Investigation received 537 complaints, it asked Tesla if it knew of any more problems with the Nvidia Tegra 3-based system, which is fitted to approximately 158,000 Models S (2012-2018) and X (2016-2018). Tesla did, handing over 2,399 complaints and field reports, 7,777 warranty claims, and 4,746 non-warranty claims.

Read 9 remaining paragraphs | Comments

Tiny version of USS Voyager sheds light on physics of microswimmers

ArsTechnica - Tue, 11/17/2020 - 5:46am
SEM image of a 3D-printed microscopic version of the USS <em>Voyager</em>, a fictional Intrepid class starship from the Star Trek franchise. Studying such objects could lead to tiny robots for targeted drug delivery, among other applications.

Enlarge / SEM image of a 3D-printed microscopic version of the USS Voyager, a fictional Intrepid class starship from the Star Trek franchise. Studying such objects could lead to tiny robots for targeted drug delivery, among other applications. (credit: R.P. Doherty et al/Soft Matter)

Physicists at Leiden University in the Netherlands have created a 3D-printed microscopic version of the USS Voyager from the Star Trek franchise, according to a recent paper in the journal Soft Matter. These kinds of synthetic "microswimmers" are of great interest to scientists because they could one day lead to tiny swimming robots for autonomous drug delivery through the bloodstream, or for cleaning wastewater, among other potential applications. Such studies could also shed light on how natural "microswimmers" like sperm and bacteria travel through the human body.

Because of their small size, microswimmers face unique challenges when they move through fluids. As we've reported previously in the context of different research, biological microorganisms live in environments with a low so-called Reynolds number—a number that predicts how a fluid will behave based on the variables viscosity, length, and speed. Named after the 19th-century physicist Osborne Reynolds, the concept is especially useful for predicting when a fluid will transition to turbulent flow.

In practical terms, it means that inertial forces (e.g., pushing against the water to propel yourself forward while swimming) are largely irrelevant at very low Reynolds numbers, where viscous forces dominate instead. So because bacteria or sperm swim at low Reynolds numbers, they can barely coast any distance at all if you push them to set them in motion. It's akin to a human trying to swim in molasses.

Read 11 remaining paragraphs | Comments

A history of Intel vs. AMD desktop performance, with CPU charts galore

ArsTechnica - Tue, 11/17/2020 - 5:30am
A tortoise and a hare are on a racetrack.

Enlarge / Spoiler: When it comes to performance over the years, Intel is the slow and steady tortoise to AMD's speedy-but-intermittent hare. (credit: Aurich Lawson / Getty Images)

The comment wars between Intel and AMD fans have been hot for the last few release cycles, with a lot of digital ink spilled about which company has—or has not—improved significantly over the years. There's been no shortage of opinions about the current raw performance of each company's fastest processors, either. We thought it would be interesting to dive into archived performance benchmarks of the fastest desktop/enthusiast CPUs for each company to get a good overview of how each has really done over the years—and perhaps to even see if there are patterns to be gleaned or to make some bets about the future.

Before we dive into charts, let's start out with some tables—that way, you can see which CPUs we're using as milestones for each year. While we're at it, there are a couple of irregularities in the data; we'll discuss those also and talk about the things that a simple chart won't show you.

Twenty years of enthusiast computing Year Intel Model AMD Model Notes 2001 Pentium 4 2.0GHz (1c/1t) Athlon XP 1900+ (1c/1t) 2002 Pentium 4 2.8GHz (1c/2t) Athlon XP 2800+ (1c/1t) Intel introduces hyperthreading 2003 Pentium 4 Extreme 3.2GHz (1c/2t) Athlon XP 3200+ (1c/1t) 2004 Pentium 4 3.4GHz (1c/2t) Athlon 64 FX-55 (1c/1t) 2005 Pentium 4 3.8GHz (1c/2t) Athlon 64 X2 4800+ (2c/2t) 2006 Pentium Extreme 965 (2c/4t) Athlon 64 X2 5000+ (2c/2t) Intel takes the undisputed performance lead here—and keeps it for a decade straight. 2007 Core 2 Extreme QX6800 (4c/4t) Phenom X4 9600 (4c/4t) Intel and AMD both launch the first true quad-core desktop CPUs 2008 Core 2 Extreme X9650 (4c/4t) Phenom X4 9950 (4c/4t) 2009 Core i7-960 (4c/8t) Phenom II X4 965 (4c/4t) 2010 Core i7-980X (6c/12t) Phenom II X6 1100T (6c/6t) Intel and AMD both introduce hex-core desktop CPUs 2011 Core i7-990X (6c/12t) FX-8150 (8c/8t) 2012 Core i7-3770K (4c/8t) FX-8350 (8c/8t) Intel abandons hex-core desktop CPUs—but few miss them, due to large single-threaded gains 2013 Core i7-4770K (4c/8t) FX-9590 (8c/8t) AMD's underwhelming FX-9590 launches—and it's Team Red's last enthusiast CPU for four long years 2014 Core i7-4790K (4c/8t) FX-9590 (8c/8t) Intel's 5th generation Core dies stillborn. AMD releases low-power APUs, but no successor to FX-9590 2015 Core i7-6700K (4c/8t) FX-9590 (8c/8t) 2016 Core i7-7700K (4c/8t) FX-9590 (8c/8t) Strictly speaking, 2016 was an Intel whiff—Kaby Lake didn't actually launch until January 2017 2017 Core i7-8700K (6c/12t) Ryzen 7 1800X (8c/16t) Launch of AMD's Zen architecture, return of the Intel hex-core desktop CPU 2018 Core i9-9900K (8c/16t) Ryzen 7 2700X (8c/16t) 2019 Core i9-9900KS (8c/16t) Ryzen 9 3950X (16c/32t) AMD's Zen 2 architecture launches, Intel whiffs hard in the performance segment 2020 Core i9-10900K (10c/20t) Ryzen 9 5950X (16c/32t) AMD's Zen 3 finally crushes Intel's long-held single-threaded performance record

Although both Intel and AMD obviously launch a wide array of processors for different price points and target markets each year, we're limiting ourselves to the fastest desktop or "enthusiast" processor from each year. That means no server processors and no High-End Desktop (HEDT) processors either—so we won't be looking at either Threadrippers or the late model XE series Intel parts.

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It’s really hard to determine which policies control COVID efficiently

ArsTechnica - Tue, 11/17/2020 - 4:45am
Image of a restaurant with a large sign saying

Enlarge / In response to a surge in cases, Germany ordered restaurants to switch to delivery/takeout only. (credit: Picture Alliance/Getty Images)

Nobody wants to go back under heavy social restrictions. But the surging case numbers are causing many countries to put in place targeted lockdowns and other limits to try to get the pandemic back under control—a move that has sparked a backlash in a lot of places. So, it seems like it's worth asking what the optimal combination of restrictions might be. How do you get the most pandemic control for the least restrictive social environment?

That's precisely what an international team of researchers attempted to find out, as described in a paper published today. And, while the researchers come up with some potential answers, their paper ends up with an additional message: this is a really hard question to answer. So, to an extent, many countries are going to have to act with imperfect information and hope for the best.

How do you answer that?

In an ideal world, we'd have some sense of the impact of each possible social restriction: closing restaurants, starting contact tracing, shutting schools, and so on. Given that information, we could look at the rate of infections and the virus's trajectory, then figure out the smallest possible set of restriction that could cause the infection rate to drop. But the real world is very far from this idealized situation at the moment, which is what motivated the researchers to try to provide a bit more certainty regarding the effectiveness of different restrictions.

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Seamless car charging comes to Electrify America with Plug&Charge

ArsTechnica - Mon, 11/16/2020 - 2:30pm
A black Porsche Taycan plugged into a sleek-looking charger

Enlarge / Charging a MY2021 Taycan at an Electrify America station (not pictured) will be as easy as plugging it in. (credit: Porsche)

Fast charging your electric vehicle at an Electrify America station just got a lot more seamless—at least for some electric vehicles. That's because the company has now implemented Plug&Charge, the user-friendly name for the ISO 15118 standard that enables an electric car to talk to the charger and handle authentication and billing.

If you ask any analyst, they'll tell you that Tesla's Supercharger network is one of the company's most valuable assets. For one thing, they're everywhere in the United States, enabling the kinds of road trips that always come up as an excuse as to why electric cars can't work. But it's not just the coverage—a Supercharger is effortless to use. You turn up and plug your car in, and it does the rest. Your Tesla tells the Supercharger who you are and whether you have to pay, and it deals with any billing. The whole arrangement really is delightfully easy.

Fast charging a non-Tesla EV is invariably a less seamless experience. You can carry a dongle on your keys, or use an app or your phone to authenticate with the charger. But in my experience, sometimes neither of those work, and you end up having to call the phone number on the side of the big humming box and ask them to turn it on for you from their side. Even when it does work smoothly, there's still some faffing about, poking a touchscreen that may not be the world's most responsive.

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Mac certificate check stokes fears that Apple logs every app you run

ArsTechnica - Mon, 11/16/2020 - 2:25pm
Digital Composite Image Of Businessman Using Laptop With Icons At Desk

Enlarge (credit: Getty Images)

Last Thursday afternoon, Mac users everywhere began complaining of a crippling slowdown when opening apps. The cause: online certificate checks Apple performs each time a user opens an app not downloaded from the App Store. The mass upgrade to Big Sur, it seems, caused the Apple servers responsible for these checks to slow to a crawl.

Apple quickly fixed the slowdown, but concerns about paralyzed Macs were soon replaced by an even bigger worry—the vast amount of personal data Apple, and possibly others, can glean from Macs performing certificate checks each time a user opens an app that didn’t come from the App Store.

For people who understood what was happening behind the scenes, there was little reason to view the certificate checks as a privacy grab. Just to be sure, though, Apple on Monday published a support article that should quell any lingering worries. More about that later—first, let’s back up and provide some background.

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More good COVID-19 vaccine news—but it won’t save us

ArsTechnica - Mon, 11/16/2020 - 1:48pm
A serious man in a suit speaks in front of a blurry World Health Organization logo.

Enlarge / Geneva: WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus announced on March 11, 2020, that the new coronavirus outbreak can now be characterized as a pandemic. (credit: Getty | FABRICE COFFRINI)

There’s more good news on the COVID-19 vaccine front today: biotechnology company Moderna reported in a press release this morning that its mRNA vaccine appeared 94.5 percent effective at preventing COVID-19 in an interim analysis of a large, Phase III trial. The news comes exactly one week after similar results came out via press release for another mRNA vaccine developed by pharmaceutical giant Pfizer and German biotech firm BioNTech.

But while health experts are “cautiously optimistic” for this and many other vaccines in the coming months, they warn that such a timeline will not be fast enough to spare lives and health care systems from the current spike in disease.

“Right now, we are extremely concerned by the surge in cases we’re seeing in some countries,” Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, Director-General of the World Health Organization, said in a press conference Monday. “Particularly in Europe and the Americas, health workers and health systems are being pushed to the breaking point.”

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Bethesda games will likely be “first or better” (not “only”) on Xbox

ArsTechnica - Mon, 11/16/2020 - 1:15pm

Following Microsoft's $7.5 billion acquisition of Bethesda in September, gamers and industry watchers were left to speculate over whether you'd need a Microsoft platform (i.e., an Xbox, a Windows PC, or xCloud streaming) to play future games in franchises like Doom, The Elder Scrolls, Fallout, Dishonored, and The Evil Within.

Now, Microsoft Xbox CFO Tim Stuart has given the clearest indication yet that future Bethesda Softworks games likely won't be exclusive to Microsoft platforms. Instead, Stuart says he suspects Microsoft will shift to "a first or better or best approach on our platforms" for these kinds of games.

Speaking at the Jeffries Interactive Entertainment Virtual Conference last Friday (as transcribed by Seeking Alpha), Stuart said directly that "in the long run... we don't have intentions of just pulling all of Bethesda content out of Sony or Nintendo or otherwise. But what we want is we want that content, in the long run, to be either first or better or best or pick your differentiated experience, on our platforms."

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Trump adviser tells Michigan to “rise up” against COVID restrictions

ArsTechnica - Mon, 11/16/2020 - 12:40pm
Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer about to speak at an event in Southfield, Michigan, on October 16, 2020.

Enlarge / Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer about to speak at an event in Southfield, Michigan, on October 16, 2020. (credit: Jim Watson | AFP | Getty Images)

One of the Trump administration's top coronavirus advisers called for Michigan residents to "rise up" against their state government to resist temporary coronavirus mitigation measures—barely one month after several men were arrested for conspiring to kidnap and assassinate the state's governor.

Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer's administration on Sunday issued a new emergency order putting a "pause" on several nonessential businesses and activities for the next three weeks. The order closes casinos and movie theaters, halts in-person dining in bars and restaurants, and requires colleges and high schools to return to all-virtual education, among other limitations. Childcare and schools up through eighth grade can remain open, as can gyms and pools, retail locations, and personal care services such as hair salons. Gatherings of up to 25 people are also permitted outdoors.

"Right now, there are thousands of cases a day, and hundreds of deaths a week in Michigan, and the number is growing," Whitmer said when announcing the order. "If we don't act now, thousands more will die, and our hospitals will continue to be overwhelmed. We can get through this together by listening to health experts once again and taking action right now to slow the spread of this deadly virus."

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iFixit tears down the iPhone 12 mini, shows how Apple crammed it all in

ArsTechnica - Mon, 11/16/2020 - 12:26pm

iFixit has posted its teardown of the iPhone 12 mini, and it found inside what seems clear from the outside: a smaller version of the iPhone 12, with no missing features or components. However, some of those components—most notably the battery—are a bit smaller than they are in this phone's 6.1-inch big brother.

iFixit found that the battery measures in at 8.57Wh. For comparison, the iPhone SE—which actually has a larger body—has a smaller 6.96Wh battery, whereas the much larger iPhone 12 and iPhone 12 Pro both have 10.78Wh batteries. This maps pretty closely to what battery tests have found: the iPhone 12 mini offers better battery life than an iPhone SE or iPhone 8, but it can’t beat its larger siblings.

Other shrunk-down components found by iFixit include a smaller Taptic Engine and loudspeaker. Also, some display-related components have been moved around, and there are only two display cables (compared to the iPhone 12's three).

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US gov’s CISO takes leave to help Trump search for election fraud

ArsTechnica - Mon, 11/16/2020 - 11:57am
Four men sitting in front of computers in a workplace.

Enlarge / These Trump allies are part of a group hunting for voter fraud. From left to right, Thomas Baptiste, Matthew Braynard, Camilo Sandoval, and Witold Chrabaszcz on November 14, 2020 in Vienna, Virginia. (credit: Getty Images | The Washington Post)

The US government's chief information security officer (CISO) is taking time off from his official duties to help President Trump's so-far-fruitless search for election fraud.

Camilo Sandoval worked on Trump's 2016 campaign and has been the federal CISO, a position in the White House's Office of Management and Budget, since October of this year. But Sandoval is now spending his days working for the newly formed Voter Integrity Fund, which is reportedly "run by government employees and former Trump campaign staffers who are analyzing voter data in six key states."

Ethics rules require federal employees to keep political activity and government work separate. Sandoval said he isn't breaking any rules, The Washington Post reported yesterday:

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Capcom: Up to 350,000 people could be affected by ransomware leak

ArsTechnica - Mon, 11/16/2020 - 9:17am
 Up to 350,000 people could be affected by ransomware leak

Enlarge

Earlier this month, Capcom revealed that there had been "unauthorized access carried out by a third party" on its internal computer systems, but the company added that "at present there is no indication that any customer information was breached." This morning, though, Capcom revealed more details of the "customized ransomware attack" affecting its internal systems, potentially including the leak of personal information for up to 350,000 people.

After a two-week investigation, the Japanese company says it can only confirm that personal information was accessed for current and former employees. But the list of "potentially compromised" people is much larger, including callers to Capcom's Japanese help desk, Capcom Store customers, members of Capcom's North American esports teams, company shareholders, and former applicants for Capcom jobs.

The information revealed in the attack generally includes names, addresses, phone numbers, and email addresses. But current and former employees had their passport information and signature revealed, Capcom says, while job applicants may have had personal photos leaked.

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The old way of handing out corporate hardware doesn’t work anymore

ArsTechnica - Mon, 11/16/2020 - 7:00am
Choose your weapons.

Enlarge / Choose your weapons. (credit: Aurich Lawson / Getty Images)

With many organizations now having a significant portion of staff working remotely—and as things are looking, this is going to be the longterm reality—the old model of how companies support a "mobile" workforce is not exactly holding up well.

I've already covered some of the issues related to having a home-based workforce in previous articles in this series. Some companies are now giving employees an allowance to upgrade their home office to something more suitable for longterm habitation. And we've already gone over the network security and architecture challenges that come into play as well.

But as we push closer to a full year of full- or part-time home work with no end in sight, the old model for what is considered "mobile worker" support on the hardware front is starting to show some serious gaps.

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Chevrolet recalls the Bolt EV after 5 confirmed battery fires

ArsTechnica - Mon, 11/16/2020 - 6:05am
Someone about to plug a DC fast charger into a Chevrolet Bolt EV.

Enlarge / For now, it's time to unplug when you get to 90-percent state of charge.

In October, news broke that the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration had opened an investigation of the Chevrolet Bolt EV due to potential battery fires while charging. On Friday, Chevrolet announced a recall affecting all model year 2017 and 2018 Bolt EVs, as well as certain MY2019 Bolt EVs.

The problem involves battery packs containing cells made at LG Chem's factory in Ochang, Korea. Chevrolet says that, working with NHTSA, it confirmed a total of five Bolt EV fires caused by this issue, which occurred when charging the cars' battery packs to full capacity.

Affected owners should contact their local Chevrolet dealer to schedule the software fix, which is available later this week. (You can check NHTSA's database to see if your vehicle identification number is included.) The update will prevent the battery from charging beyond 90 percent, and Chevrolet says it will have a permanent fix that restores the battery's ability to use 100 percent of its state of charge as soon as possible after January 1, 2021.

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Thanks to SpaceX, NASA regains a capability it lost for a decade

ArsTechnica - Sun, 11/15/2020 - 8:35pm
The Crew-1 mission streaks into the Florida sky on Sunday evening.

Enlarge / The Crew-1 mission streaks into the Florida sky on Sunday evening. (credit: Trevor Mahlmann for Ars)

A skinny black-and-white rocket streaked skyward on Sunday evening, climbing into Florida's darkening twilight skies. Its nine engines burned brightly as the Falcon booster pushed a spacecraft carrying four astronauts toward orbit.

And soon, they were there.

By all appearances, SpaceX's first operational Crew Dragon flight started off successfully, sailing smoothly through the arduous ascent phase of the mission. A couple of hours after launch, SpaceX engineers were troubleshooting an issue with heaters on fuel lines leading to the spacecraft's Draco engines. But this will likely be solved, and on Monday night an hour before midnight, Florida time, the crew—NASA astronauts Michael Hopkins, Shannon Walker, and Victor Glover; and Japanese astronaut Soichi Noguchi—should dock with the International Space Station.

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It’s launch day for the historic Crew-1 mission to the space station

ArsTechnica - Sun, 11/15/2020 - 7:30am

SpaceX and NASA made history in May by launching two astronauts—Doug Hurley and Bob Behnken—into orbit on board the privately developed Crew Dragon spacecraft.

After that highly successful two-month mission, SpaceX and NASA set about reviewing data to ensure the actual flight was consistent with all of their simulations over the course of nearly a decade. In developing Crew Dragon, among the raft of tests performed, SpaceX said it completed about 8 million hours of hardware-in-the-loop software testing, 700 tests of Dragon's SuperDraco thrusters, and nearly 100 tests and flights of Dragon's parachutes.

Following all of this work and two test flights, NASA formally completed certification of the Crew Dragon vehicle and its Falcon 9 rocket for human spaceflight earlier this month. After a decade of wandering in the wilderness, with no independent access to space following the space shuttle's retirement, NASA is about to be back in the business of flying astronauts, thanks to this public-private partnership.

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The iOS COVID-19 app ecosystem has become a privacy minefield

ArsTechnica - Sun, 11/15/2020 - 4:30am
Several rows of outdoor seating are empty, save two men staring at their smartphones.

Enlarge / Around 44 percent of COVID-19 apps on iOS ask for access to the phone's camera. 32 percent asked for access to photos. (credit: Vincenzo Pinto | Getty Images)

When the notion of enlisting smartphones to help fight the COVID-19 pandemic first surfaced last spring, it sparked a months-long debate: should apps collect location data, which could help with contact tracing but potentially reveal sensitive information? Or should they take a more limited approach, only measuring Bluetooth-based proximity to other phones? Now, a broad survey of hundreds of COVID-19-related apps reveals that the answer is all of the above. And that has made the COVID-19 app ecosystem a kind of wild, sprawling landscape, full of potential privacy pitfalls.

Late last month, Jonathan Albright, director of the Digital Forensics Initiative at the Tow Center for Digital Journalism, released the results of his analysis of 493 COVID-19-related iOS apps across dozens of countries. His study of those apps, which tackle everything from symptom-tracking to telehealth consultations to contact tracing, catalogs the data permissions each one requests. At WIRED's request, Albright then broke down the dataset further to focus specifically on the 359 apps that handle contact tracing, exposure notification, screening, reporting, workplace monitoring, and COVID-19 information from public health authorities around the globe.

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